Twitter says ‘inadvertent error’ led to removal of Shah’s profile picture

It says the ‘decision to block the account temporarily under global copyright policies was reversed immediately’

Amit Shah

Microblogging and social networking platform Twitter has said an “inadvertent error” led to the removal of Home Minister Amit Shah’s profile picture from its site. A Twitter spokesperson said that due to the error, the social media giant had to temporarily lock Shah’s account under its global copyright policies.

“Due to an inadvertent error, we temporarily locked this account under our global copyright policies. The decision was reversed immediately and the account is fully functional,” the spokesperson said.

On Thursday, Shah’s display picture was removed from his official Twitter account, which has 23.6 million followers, in response to a “report from the copyright holder.” Clicking on Shah’s profile picture on his Twitter handle showed a blank page with the message: “Media not displayed. This image has been removed in response to a report from the copyright holder.”

While the image was restored later, Twitter had not shared other details. Its copyright policy states: “In general, the photographer and NOT the subject of a photograph is the actual rights holder of the resulting photograph.”

Also read: Showing Leh as part of China a ‘criminal offence’, panel tells Twitter

Twitter’s “inadvertent” blocking of Shah’s profile picture came on a day it came to light the Union ministry of Electronics and Information Technology had issued a notice to it, seeking an explanation in five days as to why no legal action should be taken against it for showing Leh as part of Jammu and Kashmir, and not Ladakh.

While Twitter has said it has responded to the government’s letter, it is yet to correct the map to show Leh as part of the Union territory of Ladakh, and not Jammu and Kashmir.

Earlier, the social media giant had shown Leh as part of China after which the ministry had written to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, raising an objection. This error, however, was rectified.

In July this year, India’s cybersecurity nodal agency CERT-In had issued a notice to Twitter asking the micro-blogging platform for full details of the global hack targeting high-profile users, as it sought complete information on number of Indian users affected as well as impact on data.

CERT-In had also asked Twitter for information on number of users from India who have visited the malicious tweets and links, and whether the affected users have been informed by the platform about unauthorized access to their Twitter accounts.

Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) swung into action after reports that hackers gained access to Twitter’s systems to hack accounts of many global corporate leaders, politicians, celebrities and businesses.

Cyber attackers had hacked into the Twitter accounts of global high profile users — including former US President Barack Obama, Democratic presidential front-runner Joe Biden as well as many corporate leaders including Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Tesla CEO Elon Musk in a purported Bitcoin scam.

Also read: Modi gives Twitter a peek into ‘precious moments’ with his winged friends

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